Vista Equity Partners Expands Firm’s Internship Program with Opportunities for Rising College Sophomores
AUSTIN, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Vista Equity Partners (“Vista”), a leading global investment firm focused exclusively on enterprise software, data and technology-enabled businesses, today announced the expansion of the Firm’s internship program to provide new opportunities for rising college sophomores. The new program, built in partnership with the Knowledge Is Power Program (“KIPP”), a network of college-preparatory public charter schools, and The Posse Foundation (“Posse”), a leading college success and youth leadership development organization, advances Vista’s efforts to broaden its recruiting pipeline while also creating career pathways for young people from backgrounds not traditionally represented in asset management.
Internships are critical to early professional development and can be a determining factor for a young professional’s career success. Fifty-three percent of college graduates obtain full-time roles from internships or internship contacts.1 Yet, the traditional private equity recruiting model – which prioritizes candidates at an Associate level – limits opportunities for college students.
Vista identified KIPP and Posse as leaders in supporting students from underrepresented backgrounds and has created the Rising Sophomore program, a six-week paid internship program across Vista’s offices focused on developing professional skills and networks. The experience includes a capstone project, engagements with Vista leadership, hands-on training, professional development and networking opportunities that can lead to career opportunities in asset management. In order to remove additional financial barriers, travel and lodging costs are covered by Vista, allowing students from across the country to participate.
“Our internship programs allow us to provide broader access to the asset management industry for underrepresented minorities, schools and communities,” said David Breach, President and Chief Operating Officer at Vista. “The program we’ve established in partnership with KIPP and Posse extends the efforts already in place across the Firm and empowers the next generation of investors with the tools and experiences to set them up for success.”
“I am thrilled to continue our internship partnership with Vista Equity Partners,” said Tevera Stith, Vice President, KIPP Foundation’s Alumni Impact. “This internship program will give KIPP alumni the opportunity to become leaders in the private equity field and be part of creating an access pipeline for future generations.”
The Rising Sophomore program complements Vista’s existing internship programs, creating a holistic college-to-career pipeline for students. Vista’s partnership with Girls Who Invest focuses on providing opportunities to college women who are rising juniors; Vista’s Frontier Fellows program invests in students entering their senior year of college from backgrounds not traditionally represented in private equity; and the Firm welcomes a class of Summer Analysts each year recruited through a pipeline supported by academic institutions and non-profit partnerships. Through its collective internship program, the Firm has hired 18 full-time investment team members, of which 83% are women or people of color, and of its 2022 class, 8 of 12 interns will return next year as full-time employees.
“The social capital gained from early college internship experiences is vital for creating new onramps for opportunities, giving underrepresented students a chance to engage and create their own pathways to success,” added Khalida Ali, Director, Diversity and Inclusion at Vista. “We value the contributions and ideas of our interns and empower them to challenge the status quo, take the opportunities in front of them and expand their vision of what is possible. Imparting these ideals to our interns who are just starting their professional journey is what sets Vista apart. We build, grow and innovate together.”
About Vista Equity Partners
Vista is a leading global investment firm with $96 billion in assets under management as of March 31, 2022. The firm exclusively invests in enterprise software, data and technology-enabled organizations across private equity, permanent capital, credit and public equity strategies, bringing an approach that prioritizes creating enduring market value for the benefit of its global ecosystem of investors, companies, customers and employees. Vista’s investments are anchored by a sizable long-term capital base, experience in structuring technology-oriented transactions and proven, flexible management techniques that drive sustainable growth. Vista believes the transformative power of technology is the key to an even better future – a healthier planet, a smarter economy, a diverse and inclusive community and a broader path to prosperity. Further information is available at vistaequitypartners.com. Follow Vista on LinkedIn, @Vista Equity Partners, and on Twitter, @Vista_Equity.
KIPP, the Knowledge Is Power Program, is a national network of 280 public charter schools dedicated to preparing students in educationally underserved communities for success in college and life. KIPP schools are part of the free public school system and enrollment is open to all students. Started in 1994 as a middle school program, KIPP has since expanded to enroll over 120,000 students in all grades from PreK through high school. Nationwide, KIPP students complete their bachelor’s degree at three to four times higher rates than the average for students from low-income communities.
About The Posse Foundation
Posse started in 1989, inspired by a student who said, “I never would have dropped out of college if I’d had my Posse with me.” Posse recruits students as seniors in high school, works with them through an eight-month pre-collegiate training program, supports them through all four years of college, and helps them secure competitive internships and leadership-track jobs.
Posse Scholars represent the diversity of the cities from which they are recruited, and a majority are first-generation collegegoers. To be considered for the award, students must first be nominated by their high school or a community-based organization. Nominees then take part in Posse’s Dynamic Assessment Process, an innovative, nontraditional method for assessing leadership and academic potential.
Posse partners with 64 highly selective colleges and recruits dynamic students from more than 20 cities across the United States. To date, more than 10,000 students have won over $1.8 billion in scholarships from Posse partner colleges and universities. Most important, Scholars graduate at a rate of 90 percent—a rate that well exceeds the national average and equals or exceeds the average graduation rates at most selective colleges in the United States.
Vista Equity Partners
Brian W. Steel